Tuesday, May 3, 2011

In Baseball I have no hate, In football I have too much.

Wow I had some great posts lined up and but I forgot my flash drive at home so maybe I'll work something up later.  In the mean time this is something I've been thinking about for a while.  Actually it occurred to me while in Chicago watching the Cubs play at Wrigley.  Now I'm a Brewers fan and now the Brewers are in the same League and Division as the Cubs, so that would make them my enemy right?  And we went to the Shedd Aquarium that is in the same complex as the Field Museum and Soldier Field, did I want to take a tour of the Bears playing field? 

It got me thinking.  I really hate the Bears and Vikings.  Not the fans, just the teams.  I cannot fault anyone for rooting for a team based on their geography or whatnot.  I understand fandom and having your team.  But it got me thinking why I hate these teams so much in football and in baseball I really don't hate anyone.  Sitting in a great venue like Wrigley it's almost impossible not to root for the Cubs, and slightly dangerous.  I think it dates back to the start of my collecting days when I first started notice sports and paying attention.  I would watch baseball on TV and see all these great guys I had cards of.  Ryne Sandberg, Andre Dawson, Cal Ripken Jr., Robin Yount, Will Clark, Don Mattingly, Tony Gwynn, Wade Boggs, and the list goes on.  But I was a Brewers fan, being from Wisconsin, but having grown up all over the place as a military brat I got to watch a lot of other teams play on TV as the Brewers were not overly popular and to be honest my folks were not huge Brewers fans.  But when you need a team of course you folks and family as well as your geography play a big part in the team you choose.  You can have more than one, there's no crime in that.  As a young card collector and having friends who were collectors we would trade and you knew who was popular, and so if the A's were on TV playing the Yankees, I wanted to see Ricky Henderson hit as much as Don Mattingly. 

But as a football fan, there was no doubt who my team was, who my families team was, and who we hated.  The Bears and Packers have the longest standing feud in the NFL, as you would expect for the two oldest teams.  Being so close and with so much history will do that.  Maybe it's just the nature of the games.  Baseball is a gentleman's sport played in the warm months of the year starting in spring when the icy grasp of winter has finally lifted. Football is just the opposite, played just as the summer is over and winter comes roaring back in. A brutal, physical game where violence is rewarded, where fans, depending where you are, brave the elements to cheer on their team. 

Maybe it the pacing.  Baseball tends to be slow, drawn out, and lazy and football tends to be short and dramatic.  But I find today, especially with fantasy football, I watch every game a little closer, waiting to see a big play, how is that rookie going to work out, who gets hurt.  I have teams I favor more than others, same as baseball, but I can't think of a baseball team I loath, and in football I can think of a few.

Anybody else out there got an opinion?

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